Wreck Viewer

Click here to launch the Wreck Viewer application

Wreck Viewer screenshot

Welcome to the National Monuments Service (NMS) Wreck Viewer. The Wreck Viewer is a new free-to-use digital service provided by the National Monuments Service of the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. It has been developed to facilitate easy access to the National Monuments Service’s Wreck Inventory of Ireland Database (WIID) and to complement the existing Historic Environment Viewer which provides access to the databases of the Sites and Monuments Record (SMR) and the National Inventory of Architectural Heritage (NIAH).

Please note that the development of the Wreck Viewer is an ongoing project and the Viewer should not be relied upon as a definitive listing or display of all known wreck data. Records will be added to, refined and updated on an ongoing basis and as new information becomes available.

It is envisaged that the Wreck Viewer will be of assistance to all marine environment users, researchers and stakeholders and those interested in protecting underwater cultural heritage, including any individuals or organisations that might be planning development in marine, lacustrine or riverine environments. If more detailed information relating to a wreck is required than is available on the Wreck Viewer an appointment should be made with the National Monuments Service Archive Unit to view the complete wreck file. 

Data represented

It is important to note that the Wreck Viewer displays only wrecks for which we have a recorded location and these are represented on the map canvas as red dots. The red dot equates with the known approximate centre point of the wreck and is not indicative of its geographic or spatial extent. Wrecks with known locations account for approximately 22% (update and check) of the total number of records contained in the WIID; there is data held within the WIID on a large number of wrecks for which we have no precise recorded location, co-ordinate or known extent. Of the approximate 18,000 records only 4,000 have precise locations leaving approximately 14,000 wrecks in our database for which a location has yet to be confirmed.

These wrecks are not displayed in the viewer but information on them can be downloaded from the Wreck Data Download link on the banner/header of the Wreck Viewer. It should also be noted that at present only 20% of wrecks in the database have a summary description, providing information on the original vessel, their history, voyage, cargo, passengers and the story of its loss, where known. Work updating the summary field is continuing and data will be updated on an on-going basis and as new information becomes available. 

Maritime boundary

The map canvas or geographical extent of the Wreck Viewer covers Ireland’s Designated Maritime Boundary for the Continental Shelf and also includes wrecks in Ireland’s inland waterways: its rivers, lakes, canals and wetlands.

Accuracy of data

NMS endeavours to ensure that the information in the Wreck Viewer is as accurate as possible: with only a relatively small percentage of wrecks accurately located to date, any information which can clarify positions or confirm new discoveries is greatly appreciated. New information will be updated to the viewer on an on-going basis. New information can be emailed to nationalmonuments@chg.gov.ie or posted to:

Underwater Archaeology Unit
National Monuments Service
G37
Custom House
Dublin 1
D01 W6X0

Legislative protection statement

The information made available through this data set does not define the level of legal protection that might be afforded any individual wreck under the provisions of the National Monuments (Amendment) Acts (1987 and 1994). Please refer to the section on Legislation for the full overview of protective measures afforded to wreck sites under the National Monuments Acts (1930-2004).

Wreck Viewer application

Click here to launch the Wreck Viewer application

Please be advised that although this viewer has been designed to work on all browsers and platforms, including smart phones, the best results are obtained using Google Chrome.

More information:

Please read the following information links for more information on how to use the Wreck Viewer, its content, the legal protection afforded to wrecks and information on underwater archaeology in general:

Underwater Archaeology

Legal Protection of Wrecks

How to use the Wreck Viewer

Problems encountered with the functionality and content of this application should be notified to the following email address: nationalmonuments@chg.gov.ie

Dataset and Copyright

Please abide by the following copyright statement when using this dataset:

Copyright Government of Ireland. The content of this application is owned and operated by National Monuments Service, Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. This copyright material is licensed for re-use under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International licence. The permission to reproduce Government copyright material does not extend to any material on this site which may be the property of a third party. Authorisation to reproduce such material (e.g. mapping) must be obtained from the copyright holders concerned. All Rights Reserved.